Sorare home

Sorare – Live Portfolio Tracker

Sorare is a new platform that combines digital trading cards with fantasy football and is a service we have been enjoying for over a year now.

It’s a bit like online versions of Panini stickers which you buy and can then enter into fantasy football contests to win prizes.

It is relatively new but has seen tremendous growth recently, having raised $680m in venture capital last year. If you want to know more about Sorare and how it works, please check out our full Guide here

We are tracking our own progress on Sorare below.

Just a reminder to only invest an amount you are willing to lose in a new platform like this, in the same way as if following a tipster you would set aside a betting bank you would be willing to lose if the tipster had a really bad run. 

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

 

My Results

In terms of my own results, things have slowed down a little bit compared to last time which is to be expected as the European season has come to an end and there are less contests to enter.

Still I have managed to pick up some nice rewards, including young Portuguese wonderkid Fabio Vieira for finishing 14th in U23 Limited. I was delighted with the prize as he’s one of the best U23 midfielders out there and a player I had been considering buying anyway.

I was also very pleased to win Agustin Palavecino for finishing 35th in America Rare, a card which I sold for just under €500.

Overall since the last update I have won 6 cards with an estimated value of €1388.

Gallery Reshape

I have also been reshaping my gallery ahead of the next European season. My overarching strategy in this is as follows:

  1. To sell off a large portion of my limited cards and put the money towards rare cards. The thinking behind this is that scores required to win prizes keep going up and next season could well increase significantly. This is being seen everywhere but is particularly noticeable in the Limited divisions and could get crazy next season when we could see another 500-1000 of each card released.
  2. To have higher peak scorers in both Champion and Challenger Europe Rare divisions. As with the point above, having guys who score 60-70 is great, but increasingly that will not be good enough and you will need scores of 80+ to be competitive. So I have sold Casemiro at Real Madrid for example and bought Payet at Marseille who tends to get more peak scores.
  3. To bring in more Super Rares to enable me to play in the Rare Pro divisions. Essentially the higher you go in divisions the less competitive it is (relatively speaking) and the scores required for prizes have not been increasing as quickly. So it makes sense to try and move up rather than down, which is what the game should be encouraging really. At the moment I only play All Star Rare Pro but want to expand this. The catch is that Super Rares tend to be crazy-expensive, so you really have to shop around and find some bargains, for example players who are bench-warmers, injured or out of form. For my first purchase as I was really pleased to pick Benjamin Andre for just €292, which is extremely cheap for a guy who starts pretty much every game and has very consistent scores, with the odd peak score now and then.

Next season could be a really tough one in terms of winning prizes so I am aware of needing to be on my toes and being prepared to make more moves in the transfer market when opportunities present themselves.

 

Sorare Latest – Market Slowdown

In the last update we remarked on the market falling and although things have stabilised a little, it doesn’t feel like we have quite hit the bottom yet.

One of the difficulties in being sure of this is there is no universal measure for the Sorare market. Soraredata used to have a market index for the top 50 players but removed it after feeling it was not operating as intended.

So in the main all we can do is look at player prices manually and get a sense of things. Doing this you can still see a lot of prices falling or remaining flat.

Another indicator to look at is the offer volume and although this has improved lately, once you take into account the drop in the value of ETH, it would look less remarkable.

The other factor to keep an eye on is the number of new users joining Sorare and that has remained well below levels of a few months ago, with 100-200 new users per day at the moment versus 300-400 at the peak a few months ago.

So things have fallen off somewhat compared to previous levels. There is lots of optimism on social media that this is just the post-European season drop and we will see a boom again ahead of the new season.

However, as mentioned last time we remain skeptical that things will play out exactly as they did last time.

The big difference is that we are now in a cost of living crisis with high inflation and a possible recession coming. The NFT market is in freefall, wracked by scams, “rugpulls,” failed projects and negative sentiment, whereas this time last year it was booming.  

So we would not be surprised to see prices stay flat, or if they do pick up slightly, then not to the levels that we saw at the start of the last season. There is still a great deal of uncertainty in this space and a huge amount of work to do if Sorare is going to go mainstream and achieve the millions of users they are aiming for. They will now have to do so in the face of challenging economic times and an NFT bear market.

We have remarked in a number of updates about the need for a big and effective marketing campaign from Sorare but are yet to see it. So far they have relied to large extent on affiliate/referrals to grow their userbase, with 65% of new users coming that way.

They can’t rely on that forever though so we’re interested to see how they intend to grow the platform themselves. TV and YouTube adverts would seem to be the best way for Sorare to go to us, as it’s an idea that does need a bit of explaining and could really benefit from a 1-2 minute video setting out how it works and the benefits.

An advert on a billboard probably works better for a known brand like Betfair or Coca Cola but not for something the vast majority of people have never heard of and would struggle to understand just from going to the Sorare website.

In any event, let’s hope whatever they do it works well and brings in lots of new users in spite of the tough headwinds they are facing.

In terms of goings-on at Sorare itself, they have recently announced:-

  • Sorare Baseball – a big partnership with the MLB which will go live in the Summer. This is good news in terms of bringing Sorare to a big new audience in the US, but the impact on the current userbase of football users is less clear. We can’t see a huge number of baseball users necessarily crossing over to the football game and it risks stretching Sorare a little thin. However, they say they have separate teams for the two games and it will not affect the development of the football game, so let’s hope that will be the case.
  • Women’s football – Sorare suggested that women’s football is on the way and launched a survey asking users if they would want this mixed with the men’s game. Although the results of this haven’t been released yet, the general reaction on social media seemed to be overwhelmingly against it. The risk of mixing the two would be in greatly increasing supply (which never seems to be matched in terms of a proportionate increase in prizes), whilst some women’s teams may be even more dominant than the likes of Ajax and Bayern Munich are in the men’s game – although data on this has not been released either. Our feeling is it would be better to keep the men’s and women’s separate to start with and have the occasional special weekly where they could be mixed, perhaps once a month or once a fortnight. It doesn’t seem wise to mix them when there is so much uncertainty about the impact and when the overwhelming view from the community seems to be against it. At the same time, that doesn’t excuse some of the sexist comments on social media about women’s football, which is disappointing to see but sadly seems to have become part and parcel of our polarised society these days. 
  • Special Threekly – a new three player game mode has been introduced, no doubt aimed at reducing the cost for new users, which is welcome.
  • New game lobby – a new game lobby has been released, not too long after it was changed recently. Personally we are not fans of it – it is harder to navigate to prize pools for example which have to be done individually rather than being seen collectively. The look of the teams is also not great. You would hope Sorare are consulting users before making these changes because it is quite worrying to see iterations that appear worse than their previous versions and there seems to be little support for the changes amongst the community.

There has been no further mention of Sorare golf since our last update but hopefully that is still in the works.

In any event, as ever Sorare remains a fascinating project to follow and be part of. We do believe Sorare is about to enter one of the most challenging periods of its journey so far but remain hopeful they can pull it off and continue to thrive in tough economic conditions.

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

 

 

 

 

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Sorare – Live Portfolio Tracker

9th May 2022

Sorare is a new platform that combines digital trading cards with fantasy football and is a service we have been enjoying for over a year now.

It’s a bit like online versions of Panini stickers which you buy and can then enter into fantasy football contests to win prizes.

It is relatively new but has seen tremendous growth recently, having raised $680m in venture capital last year. If you want to know more about Sorare and how it works, please check out our full Guide here

We are tracking our own progress on Sorare below.

Just a reminder to only invest an amount you are willing to lose in a new platform like this, in the same way as if following a tipster you would set aside a betting bank you would be willing to lose if the tipster had a really bad run. 

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

 

My Results

In terms of my own results things have been moving along very nicely. April couldn’t have started off better as I won my best card yet in terms of value after finishing 15th out of 19,000 people in the Global All Star Rare division with 413 points.

For that I won a Leo Jardim card, who is the goalkeeper for Lille and which I sold for around €1600.

Ironically though two of the players who were in my team that won me the Jardim card have since suffered season-ending injuries. They were both MLS players, so that means missing out on around six months of action, which is brutal. One of the players, goalkeeper Brad Guzan, may not play again. 

That is the other side of Sorare – losing players to long-term injuries is really tough to take. It’s part of the game of course and happens to everyone at some point, but it underscores the value in having depth in your squad and not relying on just a small number of players.

Anyway, following on from the Jardim win there were plenty of other successes over the last month, including:-

  • Won Kingsley Coman for finishing 6th out of 19,000 people in All Star Limited
  • Won Kai Wagner for finishing 22nd out of 2,200 in America Rare
  • Won Daniel Munoz for finishing 46th out of 1,700 in Challenger Europe Rare
  • Won Lukas Hradecky for finishing 52nd out of 26,000 people in All Star Limited

Overall I’ve won 19 cards since my last update just over a month ago and the total value of those exceeeds €3,700.

This week however I had one of my strangest ever gameweeks on Sorare. One of the issues with Sorare is that if one of your players doesn’t play (known as a “DNP” – did not play), then your lineup is normally pretty much dead.

So when the first player in my lineup this week, Fedor Smolov, was surprisingly left out with a previously unknown injury, I thought the lineup was finished.

Lo and behold however, the other four players went and absolutely smashed it, netting 391 points between them! 

So I’m left with very mixed feelings here – really pleased to have ended up with such a high score and looking like I will win a Tier 1 reward (which are usually valuable cards), but gutted that Smolov didn’t play.

Had Smolov just got on the pitch I would have been looking at a top 5 finish and if he’d had a good game with a goal or assist I would have won the whole thing. Winning All Star Rare can often result in winning an Mbappe card, worth around €20,000, or a Haaland card, worth around €17,000.

In any event, this happens to lots of people and there are probably similar sob stories out there this week, so there is no point dwelling on it. Just leaves you with that feeling of what might have been!

 

Sorare Latest – Market in Freefall

In terms of what’s been going on at Sorare itself, probably the major issue in recent times is that the market has fallen quite substantially over the last couple of months.

Many people are attributing this to the European season coming to an end, but that is probably only part of the story. America cards are also falling for example, so the problem seems platform-wide.

Offer voume history

Offer volume history from soraredata.com

It seems that this may have more to do with two factors – one is the number of new users falling off somewhat, which has reduced demand a little – and the other is the general “cost of living crisis” which is hitting everyone pretty hard at the moment.

As anyone who is involved in any other market will tell you, whether that be stock markets, crypto markets, NFT markets or whatever, markets everywhere have been taking a real hammering this year. Sorare’s fall is probably part of that and the platform cannot be viewed just in isolation.

However, a flip side of the market falling is that it reduces the cost of entry for new users and gives a healthy dose of realism to those who thought the market would just keep going up forever. As long as prices start to stabilize then it could be a good thing in the long run to have a correction at this stage and bring some stability to prices.

Other major developments since our last update have included:-

  • The Scottish Premier League (minus Rangers) has been added, which was welcomed with much joy by the vibrant Scottish community on Sorare, although raised concers once again about increasing the competitiveness of scores without a commensurate increase in rewards. It also raised the spectre of a split in the Challenger division, which although does not seem imminent, is surely due at some stage as Sorare keep adding new leagues.
  • The MLS is now fully licensed in a new partnership with Sorare. This means there are full player pictures in their kits on the cards rather than just their heads. It should also help with the growth of the platform in America.
  • IOS App launched – the app had been in beta for a while but is now fully live on iOS. It’s pretty good and allows you to enter teams and monitor scores, plus get notifications. You can’t trade on it yet but that’s a lot more complicated to programme so it could be a while yet before trading is added. Hopefully it won’t be too long before the Android app is added as well. 
  • Mbappe Unique auction went for €416,00 – which sounds like a lot (and is!) but was considerably less than expected and about €200,000 less than the Haaland Unique auction back in January. That really just reflects the general drop in the market there has been over the last few months.
  • Sorare Golf incoming? It has been reported that Sorare are in the process of signing a deal with the PGA Tour for a licence to mint Sorare cards of tour players. As golf fans this would be amazing and just shows the ambition of Sorare to become a “global sports entertainment giant.” Yes they do need to iron out some of the kinks in the football game first but that’s not to say they shouldn’t be agreeing licensing deals and getting things moving in other sports whilst they do.

So as ever it’s been a busy time at Sorare HQ and there’s a great deal to get excited about.

As we have said a few times, ultimately their success or failure will depend on being able to add new users to the platform – the aim is for millions – so that’s where their focus should be.

They have mentioned big marketing plans being in the works which is encouraging, but also tweeted recently about looking for new marketing talent to hire, so perhaps the plans aren’t imminent.

Either way they are still growing quite solidly just through organic channels so we’ll let things play out and just enjoy playing the game in the meantime.

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

 

 

 

 

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Sorare – Live Portfolio Tracker

2nd April 2022

Sorare is a new platform that combines digital trading cards with fantasy football and is a service we have been enjoying for over a year now.

It’s a bit like online versions of Panini stickers which you buy and can then enter into fantasy football contests to win prizes.

It is relatively new but has seen tremendous growth recently, having raised $680m in venture capital last year. If you want to know more about Sorare and how it works, please check out our full Guide here. 

We are tracking our own progress on Sorare below.

Just a reminder to only invest an amount you are willing to lose in a new platform like this, in the same way as if following a tipster you would set aside a betting bank you would be willing to lose if the tipster had a really bad run. 

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

 

Community Update – Our Thoughts

Sorare finally released a long-awaited Community Update last week after having been quiet for months.

You can read the full update here, – or watch it here:

Rather than rehash what was said we thought it would be better to just give our thoughts on the announcements made:

  • Gameplay – the introduction of two new tournaments – the Underdog & Specialist Leagues – was very welcome. It’s something we’ve been calling for almost since we joined the platform and numerous times in our updates below. It gives more utility to lower-tier cards and aids progression for those with smaller budgets. Inevitably there will still be bottlenecks for in-demand players for a particular gameweek (see goalkeepers with L15 under 40 this week) but overall it should aid those willing to scout players ahead of time and do their research.
  • Rare Divisions – The real bombshell of the whole announcement was the news that common cards will not be allowed in the rare divisions from August. On the one hand it’s understandable that Sorare don’t want people coming in and just milking the threshold, but on the other hand it will surely lead to the prices of rare goalkeepers rocketing. It’s unclear yet how many people might just leave the rare divisions altogether if it becomes too expensive to buy a goalie. Interestingly figures from Soraredata show that 40-50% of entries in the rare divisions include a common card, which is a huge proportion. There is the possibility that the rare divisions become something of a “closed shop” with the barrier to entry just too high for most people. 
  • Legends Challenge – finally, finally, after over six months of waiting Sorare revealed that there will be a chance to use our Legends cards in special tournaments. It will be a maximum of 3 Legends per lineup, which makes sense to avoid duplicate lineups and there will be one tournament every two weeks to start off with. The big disappointment though was the number of prizes – just 25 cards being given away, which frankly is a joke. They need to up this to 100-200 cards at least to give the Legends genuine value.
  • Pegging ETH to USD – another sensible change will be to peg the ETH thresholds to USD from August. So 205 points will get you $25 and 250 points will get you $50. This had been trailed last year so is no surprise and makes sense to ensure the sustainability of the platform. If ETH goes to $10,000 for example they can’t really afford to give out $200 to every person who hits 250 points, which is a very achievable score.
  • Card Allocations – 40% of cards will be reserved for rewards. There is some debate in the community whether this is the same or if it used to be 50%, but either way it shouldn’t mean too much change in reward allocations. Ultimately it is becoming harder to win cards and will get ever harder (particularly in the Limited divisions) and that is something Sorare will have to address in the long run – we have suggested issuing a “Sorare token” would be one way of doing so.
  • New Card Designs – personally we aren’t huge fans of the new card designs and there appear to be mixed views in the community about them. It is subjective of course and isn’t fundamental to the gameplay or anything, so we are not too concerned either way.
  • Mobile App – the mobile app is in beta (Apple only at the moment) and looks fairly basic to be honest. Until they incorporate trading and lineup entry into it, we assume most people will continue using the Soraredata app, which is very good.
  • MLS Partnership – Sorare already had MLS cards through the pro soccer association in the US, but an official agreement with the MLS itself cements things and it sounds like it’s a long-term deal. Sorare have big marketing plans in the US so this forms part of that effort to “crack America,” Beatles-style.

Overall it was a good announcement and after such a long wait for news it was a relief they didn’t mess it up and had some positive developments to give the community.

The key focus now should be on getting the reward pools right (more on that below) and improving the small but important things like having a counter-offer button and withdraw-to-bank option.

 

My Results

In terms of my own results I have continued to move along nicely, regularly picking up rewards. Most of them have been solid rather than spectacular, but that is how I’ve set up my gallery – to consistently churn out ROI across multiple divisions and regions and not being overly reliant on any one player or team.

However, whilst my results have been good, some of the rewards I’ve received have been very disappointing.

Let’s have a look for example at Gameweek 251 where I finished 4th out of 18,845 people. Normally this yields a top card – one of the big European stars and normally a card worth €500 – €1,000.

So I was all pumped for rewards and looking at some of the big names I could win. Vini Jr? Thomas Muller? Tadic maybe?

Instead I received Leandro Damiao. “Who?” you may ask. Exactly. He plays in the Korean league and is 32. I managed to sell him for €350 and he is now going for around €320.

This felt like a punch in the gut after finishing 4th out of nearly 19,000 people and putting up a massive score. The game is very tough and it is getting harder and harder to finish anywhere near the top 10 now.

Sorare really need to fix this. Someone revealed recently that they have only given away a handful of Limited Mbappes for example, despite (according to their own announcement) having hundreds earmarked for rewards. I’m not saying they should give away hundreds of Mbappes right now as that would devalue the card, but clearly they are holding back hugely on giving away the top cards and this has led to a great deal of disappointment, just as I felt after receiving Damaio for finishing 4th.

Looking at the reward pools, anyone even reasonably familiar with football can see which rewards belong in which position. This shouldn’t be difficult for them to fix and should be their number one priority now.

Anyway, other than this (fairly major) gripe, the game is still enjoyable to play and I think there is still a lot of potential for the platform to grow once the marketing starts. 

Let’s just hope they can really focus now on getting things right before launching any new sports or making any big deals though.

 

 

 

 

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Sorare – One Year Anniversary

16th February 2022

It’s exactly a year since I joined Sorare so thought it would be a good time to take a look back at how things have gone over the last 12 months and my thoughts on strategy and the platform going forward.

Before we get into it though, in case you are not familiar with Sorare, you can check out our guides below:-

Just a reminder that it’s advisable to only invest an amount you are willing to lose in a new platform like this, in the same way as if following a tipster you would set aside a betting bank you would be willing to lose if the tipster had a really bad run. 

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

 

One-Year Anniversary – How Has it Gone?

I joined the platform exactly one year ago, on 16th February 2021. At that time I thought it sounded interesting but was still a little sceptical.

I was attracted by all the attention it was getting and then shortly afterwards Sorare announced they had raised $50m in venture capital funding, which gave me a lot more confidence that they were going somewhere.

So I invested a couple of thousand in the platform to start with and began building from there.

A year later and here are some of the key stats from my Sorare portfolio:

  • Gallery value: €56,499 (21.38 ETH)
  • 103 rewards won
  • 21.37% reward-winning lineups
  • €21,165 (7.83 ETH) value of rewards won
  • 0.92 ETH earnings (€2,485)

To be honest it’s pretty crazy to look at that. Certainly I couldn’t have imagined those figures or some of the cards I own now when I joined a year ago.

Of course, that’s just a paper profit until you’ve actually sold the cards and withdrawn the funds to your bank account, so it’s important to not get too carried away. I’m still very pleased nonetheless.

Importantly I am now nearly risk-free, having withdrawn a lot of funds over the past few months. At the high point I had around ten thousand pounds invested in the platform but now that is under two thousand. I aim to withdraw the rest of that over the next couple of months and will then be risk-free, but still have a very strong gallery capable of winning rewards.

Lessons Learned

Reflecting on the last year, some things gone well and some that could have gone better in terms of my own strategy on Sorare.

Here are the lessons I have learned and the things I wish I had known a year ago, or hopefully that you can learn from if you are new to Sorare.

 

Lesson #1 – Patience!

The most important lesson is patience. If you have scouted a player and have confidence in them etc, generally it really pays off to have patience.

The most painful example of this I had was with Hakan Calhanoglu. Back in October I bought his rare card for 0.2 ETH, which was around €600 at the time. I had generally been a fan of his and felt he could deliver big scores as he has a great long shot and takes lots of set pieces.

The next game however he was dropped by the Inter Milan coach. It killed one of my lineups that otherwise would have won a prize. In anger I sold him, taking a small loss on the trade.

You can probably guess what happened next.  Calhanoglu went on an absolute tear, scoring goals left, right and centre and his price rocketed up to 1.8 ETH, or around €6,000.

If I had just had the patience to hold on after he was dropped, I would have held one of the most valuable midfielders on the platform. The reason I bought him was because I could see the talent and knew he was capable of stringing some big scores together, but I reacted emotionally to one game, which obviously was a big mistake.

It can work the other way too – there are players I’ve held onto for a long time that are yet to come good. However, those that do come good can repay your patience so many times over they make up for those that don’t.

Generally I’ve found that most players I’ve given time to have really come good and it’s been worth it – particularly if they’re young players.

 

Lesson #2 – Buying Injured and out-of-form Players

This is something we go into depth on in our strategy guide but to summarise, one of the simplest and most effective strategies on Sorare is to buy injured and out-of-form players.

It has worked countless times for me, most notably with Paulo Dybala who I picked up very cheaply when he was going through a spate of injuries but since then has been a superb scorer and his price has picked up significantly. 

It is very predictable and can be seen time and time again. One recently I was kicking myself over was Neymar, whose price for his Limited card dropped down to €500 in early December after he picked up an injury.

However, he had been trading at over €1,000 before that. You could bet that when Neymar returned from injury, his price would return back towards it’s previous level. Well that’s exactly what happened.

Neymar price graph

Neymar’s price graph from Soraredata. His price dropped to around €500 in December but is now over €1200

The same can go for out-of-form players or those the current manager doesn’t like. Fortunes can change quickly and when they do, prices can rocket – particuarly if the player gets a favourable transfer.

 

Lesson #3 – Don’t Be Afraid to Bid A Little Higher to Get Your Player

Another lesson I’ve learned is to not be afraid to bid a little higher than you originally intended in order to secure a player you really want.

An example of this was a player I was keen on soon after joining Sorare and that was Eder Militao from Real Madrid. I had seen him listed for €239 and thought that was a great price for a promising young Brazilian at one of the world’s biggest clubs.

When I came to bid on him though the price was pushed up towards €350 and that put me off, so I didn’t buy him. Well that proved a big mistake as he has established himself in the Madrid team since then and he is now going for about five grand.

So even though the price got to a level that was higher than I had intended, it would have been beneficial to still increase my bid as it was still excellent value. Comparable players were going for a lot more at the time and I could see Militao had a lot of potential. I was put off though because the price was more than I had originally seen and that clouded my judgement. Ultimately it is okay to go above your original price if it is to secure a bargain with a lot of potential upside.

 

Lesson #4 – Take Your Time

The other main lesson we would advise if you are new to the platform is to take your time before investing in lots of players. Most users – myself included – tend to take a scattergun approach when we join Sorare and buy a load of players, often from different regions without too much strategy.

It’s a better idea to take your time, learn the ropes, absorb lots of content and really plan out a strategy. Which card scarcity do you want to target? Do you want to trade, play SO5, or both? Which region(s) do you want to focus on? These are all the kinds of questions you should work out first before buying loads of cards.

 

Other Lessons

There are lots of other lessons we have learned, like listening to the top podcasters and YouTubers, making use of Soraredata and other stats sites to scout players, building stacks and much more.

It can also really pay to target quiet gameweeks where there aren’t many games on and to build a team around that. You need to do that a few weeks in advance though, as if you do it last minute the prices of available players will have shot up.

Overall though as with most things in life, the best lessons are the ones you learn yourself as you go along. We all learn from our mistakes and that is part of the process. 

 

The Future on Sorare

In terms of my own strategy on Sorare going forward I am quite well set across a number of regions so don’t feel like there is too much that needs changing at this stage. It’s more a question of making tweaks here and there and gradually improving the squad.

One thing that is becoming apparent though is how hard it is to win in the Limited divisions so I have been selling off a lot of my Limited cards and using the funds to strengthen my Rare teams. In general I will continue to do so, unless Sorare start awarding more cards in the Limited divisions or make some other structural changes that make it more desirable to play there.

The only exception to this is that I plan on keeping a good U23 Limited team. I see this as a good way of picking up stars of the future and as I already have my strongest Limited team there is makes sense. I may add the occasional maquee signing too as I could see some players really exploding in value if Sorare really takes off.

On that note, it has been a rather quiet few months from Sorare’s point of view. The communication has really dipped which is a shame as that had been one of their strong points. It may be something to do with the $680m they raised and wanting to adopt more of a corporate culture appropriate for a multi-billion dollar company looking to IPO in the next couple of years rather than a fun, community-driven start-up they may have been before.

In any event, hopefully the silence is a sign that there’s lots going on behind the scenes and some big announcements are coming down the pipe. I would really like to see the long-awaited utility for Legends cards as I hold a few of them and am very keen to use them. It has been quite disappointining to be waiting for months now after originally being promised we would be able to use the cards each month.

Moreover the community is rightly pushing for Sorare to fix the rewards structure which has been out of whack for a while now.

It feels like a broken record to be saying this but if they could just get these issues sorted then the platform could be ready to really fly and be everything we know it can be.

In the meantime we will keep enjoying it and hoping the next year can be as good as the last.

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

 

 

 

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Sorare – End of Year Review and Thoughts for 2022

30th December 2021

As we come to the end of 2021, we thought it would be a good time to look back at our journey on Sorare this year, what has happened on the platform since we joined – and what we might look forward to in 2022.

 

My Sorare Journey in 2021

I (Dan) joined Sorare back in February. Back then there were less than 5,000 users on the platform. It felt like quite a quirky, niche idea and to be honest I didn’t know what to make of it.

I’d taken a look at it a couple of months previously and thought “nah, this isn’t for me.” I’m not really into collecting cards and haven’t done so since having a Panini sticker album when I was about seven. This looked like a digital version of that – fine if you’re into that sort of thing, but not something that interested me.

My Twitter timeline was getting filled up with people raving about Sorare though, so I thought I’d better take a second look. What really encouraged me to do so was people saying you could earn the equivalent of €25 per week just by hitting a points threshold in Sorare’s fantasy football game, which apparently wasn’t that difficult to do.

There was also a big buzz at the time about NFT platforms like Sorare. A guy called Gary V (Vaynerchuk), who I had never heard of but was apparently a huge deal in the space, had bought some Sorare cards and there was supposedly a “boom” unfolding. Sorare themselves had raised $50m in venture capital funding. It all felt quite dizzying.

https://twitter.com/bneiluj/status/1364956129688776708

Anyway, intrigued by all this, I signed up to Sorare and received a dozen or so cards for free, but to be honest I still couldn’t get my head around it. There were all these different colour cards, different divisions, various sale processes and the Sorare community seemed to have a lingo all of its own. What the heck did “SO5,” “Super-Rare,” “Global All-Star D4,” “NFT” and “ETH threshold,” mean? 

I didn’t want to give up straight away though so persevered. After a couple of days of watching YouTube videos, reading some guides and even buying an e-book on Amazon I started to get my head around what it was all about.

In some ways this didn’t feel like a very auspicious start. If Sorare was this difficult to get into, how many other people were actually going to take the time to learn about it and stick with it? And if other people didn’t join, would the platform succeed and these cards hold any value?

I was a little dubious, but decided to stick with it and buy a few cards to see if I could hit the threshold to win the around €25 (as it was then) per gameweek. In theory it wouldn’t take too long to make my initial investment back and then I could play risk-free. In essence I only needed the platform to stick around long enough to do so and with $50m in the bank it seemed likely they would.

So I began plugging away, spent hours on the third party site Soraredata looking at potential players to buy and started to formulate a strategy. This was thanks in part to the many helpful guides there are out there from the likes of Youtubers Quinny and John Nellis.

A few weeks later I was hooked. Suddenly I was scouting players in the MLS and Belgian Jupiler League searching for a hidden gem, even though I had never watched and knew nothing about those leagues before joining Sorare. I was finding myself watching obscure football matches from around the world to see how my players were scoring. An Argentinian game at one in the morning? No problem. A random Belgian match featuring two teams I’d never heard of? I’m there.

This in essence is the beauty of Sorare. It’s quite hard to describe to someone who isn’t on the platform, but owning these cards does give you a special connection to the players that I haven’t felt in other fantasy football games. It’s an engrossing experience and is a little like going down a rabbit hole from which there is no escape (in a good way).

Spring Shopping – Breaking America

And so in early Spring my journey began. After a short time just playing for the threshold score – which as it turns out was quite easy to hit as people had said – I decided to try and aim a bit higher.

I saw that the MLS was due to start in late April but little attention was being paid to it and the players were priced much cheaper than their counterparts in other leagues that were currently in action. Buying players a couple of months ahead of time seemed like a sensible thing to do – it wasn’t long to wait in the real world, even if a few weeks feels like an eternity in Sorare time.

So I bought myself what looked like some value players – Brad Guzan, a goalkeeper I felt I vaguely knew and may have seen play for the USA at some distant point in the past; Jack Price, a fellow Englishman who seemed to have very consistent scores and was surprisingly cheap; Francisco Calvo, a solid-looking defender who played for Chicago, and Latif Blessing, a forward for Los Angeles to complete the set. 

Price and Guzan Sorare cards

Some early MLS signings on Sorare

With the possible exception of Guzan, I had never seen any of these players play. Thanks to the superb stats site Soraredata however, I felt I had uncovered some gems and was armed and ready for the MLS to kick off. 

Going in early turned out to be one of my better decisions on Sorare, as the prices of those players rocketed as we got towards the start of the season. With hindsight it would have been better to sell them at that point, as the prices gradually fell quite substantially from those highs as the new season cards were released.

Hindsight is always 20-20 of course, but more importantly the relatively cheap signings I had made allowed me to compete for cards consistently in the Champion America divisions over the next few months and it became my most successful region to compete in.

Endless Summer

It wasn’t long before Summer rolled around and with lockdowns ending and the world opening up, spirits were high. Sorare added to the buzz by providing coverage of the Euros and Copa America in their fantasy tournaments, including introducing a few national teams like France, Belgium and Germany. This gave us some additional excitement over the Summer months, which otherwise may have dragged on seemingly endlessly.

Sadly I had little success in those tournaments as it was difficult to guess team selections correctly, but at least it added a bit of fun. It was also a time to research the European leagues due to start again in the Autumn. The scouting never stops on Sorare.

Even as things slowed down a little in the football world after the Euros ended, Sorare didn’t slow down their pace of development. An upgrade to the platform was made meaning much faster and cheaper card transfers, something which had been really holding them back and costing them millions in fees (which generously they had not been passing on to customers like most other NFT projects).

With that upgrade complete they unveiled a whole new type of card – the Limited cards:

These were much cheaper than the existing cards and opened up a whole new userbase to Sorare who could previously not afford the high cost of entry. User numbers really started to take off. It felt like a necessary move but was executed very smoothly and relatively quickly by the Sorare team – one of their big success stories of the year I felt.

For my part I initially stayed away from these new cards, beleiving it would become too competitive with so many cards available – everyone was going to have amazing teams and there would be hundreds of them.

However, after listening to an edition of the SorareAndrews podcast I was convinced otherwise. The case was this: if you get in early, the chances of winning cards will be high (due to a low number of entrants). You could then potentially snowball rewards, building up a really good team and XP and get a headstart on those coming in later. Plus it was kinda fun to own cards you previously could have only dreamed of buying.

So I dived in and went heavy on Limited cards, particularly in the Challenger Europe division. It was like being a kid in a candy store – suddenly I could afford an Ajax “stack” (shorthand for a group of players from the same team), players who were legends on Sorare (but otherwise unknown) like Morioka and even a goalkeeper or two.

By the time the Champion Europe Limited cards came out they were too expensive for me to buy a similarly top team, but I did pick out some value plays like Dani Parejo (a favourite of podcaster John Nellis), Gerard Moreno, Jordi Alba, Luka Modric and a goalkeeper from Sevilla known simply as “Bono” (a U2 fan perhaps?). Sorare have a fondness for single-name players for some reason.

Champion Europe Sorare cards

Early Champion Europe Limited cards

In any event, I was glad I went in early on these Limited cards as I won quite a few rewards that largely covered the cost of the cards. Plus the value of the cards has gone up considerably – although down somewhat from the crazy highs they reached at one point.

It has, as expected, become increasingly competitive in the Limited divisions with thousands of entries each week and higher scores being needed for the top prizes. It seems like Sorare have some scope to increase the rewards to compensate, but ultimately at some point there are only so many cards they can give away so it will get tougher to win cards.

In the grand scheme of things though I am hoping Sorare grows enough over the next few years that these Limited cards become like Rares are now – scarce and highly sought after at the top end.

 

Autumn Arrives – And The Money Men Come Hunting for A Piece of the Sorare Action

As the long Summer days came to an end and Autumn arrived, so did the Money Men. Rumours had been circling for a while that investment funds wanted a piece of Sorare and various audacious sums had been floated in the media – $400m, $500m, maybe even more.

In the end a quite astronomical sum of $680m was raised, led by Japanese conglomerate Softbank. Quite what that much money was for, or how Sorare had gone from quirky start-up when I joined in February to a $4bn company just a few months later was almost unfathomable. It was good though – very good for Sorare and users who joined early.

Suddenly there was talk of Sorare jumping into other sports, becoming a “Sports Enterainment Giant” and opening a New York office. Were they moving too fast? Should they be rushing into other sports whilst their football game was still very much a work in progress? What would they actually spend the money on? Such questions were perhaps for another day amid all the excitement.

Sorare just kept rolling out the big announcements though. A slick marketing video unveiled new “Legends Cards” of players like Van Basten, Beckenbauer and Ronaldo (the Brazilian one).

https://twitter.com/Sorare/status/1440988996675457024

Then there was a blockbuster announcement of a huge deal with La Liga, bringing the entire league to Sorare. The deal included Sorare advertising on the boards at La Liga games and there were even VIP tickets to El Classico as prizes in Sorare contests. Things were really taking off.

Not content to stop there though, hot on the heels of the La Liga news came the addition of the Bundesliga. For some reason there wasn’t quite the same fanfare,  but it did include news of there being “moments” in the future, which would essentially be clips of goals from players much like TopShot had been doing for the NBA.

More leagues were added including Austria, Turkey and the rest of the Russian league as Sorare moved towards their goal of covering the top 20 leagues around the world. It was certainly an exciting time for Sorare.

In terms of my own strategy, I had centred a lot around building a Juventus stack for the Champion Europe region. There was one problem with this however, as I soon realised: they were terrible.

So a restructure was needed, which coincided with wanting to take some money out of the platform anyway. A number of players went out the door including the Juve flops, but also from Challenger Europe where I struggle to follow so many leagues. Some profits were withdrawn which felt like a sensible thing to do.

Even though things seemed to be going great for Sorare, you can never be sure what will happen in the future and after what happened to Football Index it makes sense to derisk when you can.

 

Winter’s Coming

With all the excitment of previous months things had to slow down at some point and eventually they did.

The last couple of months have been a little quiet on Sorare, which is perhaps understandable given everything they’ve achieved this year.

A quieter period might have been a time to address some of the outstanding issues on the platform but sadly most of them remain unresolved. We have mentioned them a number of times here so won’t rehash everything, but these could perhaps be classified as “gripes” rather than anything majorly wrong with the platform.

They include:

  • Fixing rewards
  • No utility yet for Legend cards
  • No Progress Bar yet
  • No Academy League yet
  • No counter-offer button
  • No withdraw to bank option yet

As you can see, most of the issues are things they haven’t done yet and have been awaited for quite some time. Hopefully they can increase the pace of hiring – they aim to grow the team from around 40-50 at the moment to 200 next year, which should enable them to finally get these things done.

In terms of my own journey, I’ve had more success than I possibly could have imagined when I joined back in February. I’ve won nearly $20,000 worth of rewards and seen my gallery increase many times in value.

Whilst it’s tempting to pat oneself on the back and think you’re some kind of genius, it has to be recognised that quite a lot of this success can be attributed to the growth in the platform itself.

As more users join Sorare and with a fixed scarcity of cards, those cards become more valuable. Someone joining a year ago with the same amount of money would expect to have done considerably better than someone joining six months ago, who would in turn expect to do better than someone joining today – and so on.

This could be seen as both a strength and weakness of Sorare’s structure – it rewards early adopters (just look at some of the insanly low prices people paid a year ago) and encourages people to join now rather than waiting, but at the same time could people off in future. Why join if it’s so difficult to compete with the early adopters who have such a massive advantage over you? 

Again, we have discussed possible solutions to this at length in previous updates so don’t want to rehash those all here, but it is something worth thinking about both from Sorare’s point of view and users who have joined over the last year.

Talking of users, the growth in user numbers has been exponential in 2021, from around 3,000 a year ago to nearly 75,000 today.

Sorare user graph

Graph from Soraredata.com

 

Looking to the Future – What 2022 May Have in Store

There’s no doubt that 2021 has been a breakthrough year for Sorare. Raising over $700m in funding, striking deals with La Liga and the Bundesliga and so many other leagues around the world, upgrading their tech and introducing a new scarcity of cards have been major success stories.

In terms of what to expect next year, it can be quite difficult to predict as they keep their cards close to their chest, but CEO Nicolas did possibly tease a big new league coming soon in a tweet: 

We’re not sure if that was a rhetorical question as surely the Premier League would be by far the biggest news they could announce and would be huge for the platform. Indeed the vast majority of the replies called for the EPL so hopefully that is imminent, although there is nothing firm to suggest if it is or not. We’ll just have to wait and see on that front.

Hopefully they’ll fix the issues we have mentioned above, but most of all we would like to see them continue to improve the user experience and grow the number of users.

In order to do so, we would like to see them do a few things to make Sorare more accessible to new users:

  • Introduce a stablecoin so those not familiar with crypto don’t have to grapple with ETH;
  • Have more guides and introductions for people joining (including video guides);
  • Introduce a “Limited Pro” division;
  • Build an app for Sorare; 
  • Introduce the Academy League (for players with average scores under say 50 or 45).

All of this would do a lot to bring Sorare to the mainstream. At the moment we feel that despite all the growth and success, Sorare is still quite a niche, quirky platform much like we found when we joined in February. Try explaining Sorare to a friend, or get them to join and you will tend to get either a glazed look or a confused look.

That is something that ultimately needs to change if they are ever going to have the millions of users they are aiming for.

In the meantime though, it is fair to reflect that 2021 has been a great year for Sorare and it has been great fun to be involved with. We hope 2022 is as good a year for them.

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

 

 

 

 

 

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Sorare – Portfolio Update

30th November 2021

Sorare is a new platform that combines digital trading cards with fantasy football and is a service we have been enjoying for the last few months. 

It’s a bit like online versions of Panini stickers which you buy and can then enter into fantasy football contests to win prizes.

It is relatively new but has seen tremendous growth recently, having raised $680m in venture capital last month. If you want to know more about Sorare and how it works, please check out our full Guide here. 

We are tracking our own progress on Sorare below.

Just a reminder to only invest an amount you are willing to lose in a new platform like this, in the same way as if following a tipster you would set aside a betting bank you would be willing to lose if the tipster had a really bad run. 

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

Anyway, how has it been going on Sorare? 

 

Results Update

I (Dan) joined back in February and have now won 0.75 ETH in threshold rewards – which is around $3,400 at today’s prices – and 3.26 ETH worth of card rewards – about $14,900 at today’s prices.

So that’s a combined $18,300 in total rewards won since joining Sorare nine months ago. 

That’s considerably more than I have put into the platform, and of course of the value of my gallery has increased many times over as well. 

So it’s probably an understatement to say that things have gone pretty well! 

Here’s one of the better rewards I won recently by finishing 32nd in the Champion Europe Rare division:

He’s a full Spain international and very promising player, which I was able to sell for around €1,000.

As mentioned last time, my goal is to de-risk from the platform as I do have one or two concerns about the long-term picture around both the platform and rewards, which are somewhat unclear at the moment.

So this month I have taken out over €3,500, on top of around €2,000 last month. It’s quite a difficult thing to do to let go of some of your cherished cards, but it absolutely felt like the right thing to do and now leaves me close to playing risk-free.

 

Sorare Platform Updates

It’s been a bit quiet lately in terms of developments on the Sorare platform itself, but they have been adding new clubs and leagues at a pace. The latest additions are the Russian and Turkish leagues, to add yet more competition to the Challenger Europe divisions. There are rumours the full Argentinian league could be coming soon too.

The long-awaited Progress Bar is still being worked on and won’t be unveiled for at least a couple of months. As we discussed last time this could be because they want to ensure it is both rewarding to players but also sustainable for them financially, which is not an easy balance to strike.

In any event, whilst they continue to beaver away on it the ETH threshold rewards are still available and those are now worth around €70 twice per week, which is great if you can hit that 250 points each gameweek.

Reflecting on 2021

As we come towards the end of 2021 it’s a good time to reflect on what an unbelievable year it’s been for Sorare and the incredible growth they’ve achieved. At the start of the year they had just 3,000 paying users and now have over 64,000. 

Plus of course there’s been the $680m fundraise, the release of Limited cards, the upgrade to Starkware, the partnerships with the Bundesliga and La Liga and so much more.

There are still some issues to be fixed on the platform but if they can work through those then 2022 could be a very positive year indeed for them and users of Sorare.

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

 

 

 

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Sorare – De-Risking and the case for a Sorare Cryptocurrency

1st September 2021

Sorare is a new platform that combines digital trading cards with fantasy football and is a platform we have been enjoying for the last few months. 

It’s a bit like online versions of Panini stickers which you buy and can then enter into fantasy football contests to win prizes.

It is relatively new but has seen tremendous growth recently, having raised $680m in venture capital last month. If you want to know more about Sorare and how it works, please check out our full Guide here. 

We are tracking our own progress on Sorare below.

Just a reminder to only invest an amount you are willing to lose in a new platform like this, in the same way as if following a tipster you would set aside a betting bank you would be willing to lose if the tipster had a really bad run. 

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

Anyway, how has it been going on Sorare? 

 

Update

Rather than going too deeply into our own results this time – which have continued to be good with lots of rewards won – we thought it would be better to give a few updates on where we see the platform at this moment in time and where it might be headed. 

On the one hand it has been a remarkable few months for Sorare, with some amazing achievements. These include:-

  • Raising $680m, the largest Series B in European VC history
  • Upgrading the network to enable faster and cheaper transactions
  • Introducing a new “Limited” card scarcity 
  • Onboarding the whole of La Liga
  • Onboarding the whole of the Bundesliga
  • Introducing “Legends” cards of some of the greats of the game like Van Basten, Beckenbauer, Ronaldo and Casillas
  • Growing the user base 10x from earlier this year

On the other hand, there continue to be a host of niggles with the platform that remain unresolved:-

  • Fixing the reward tiers
  • Fixing bugs on the platform
  • Requiring KYC for customers (to stop multi-accounting and money-laundering)
  • Introducing a counter-offer button
  • Introducing a withdraw to bank/card option
  • Introducing a progression bar
  • Introducing the Academy League
  • Introducing a stablecoin 

It feels like the team are prioritising onboarding new teams and leagues – therefore allowing them to sell more cards and make more money – rather than dealing with these key issues which affect the user experience. 

Moreover, we do not see any inclination from them to tackle the inherent inequality in the game, which we discussed in great depth here. Unless this is tackled via some kind of limitation on “stacking” or the number of star players allowed per team, we are really not sure the game is sustainable in the long run for all but the most wealthy of users and the early adopters.

 

Derisking and Restructuring

In light of this we have decided to sell off a large portion of our gallery and significantly de-risk. This was always the plan long term but niggling doubts over where the platform is going and having been burned by the failure of similar platforms in the recent past have led to bringing this forward.

It will also help to focus on fewer regions and leagues, as it has become quite difficult to keep track of so many players and teams spread across various leagues around the world. 

We have also been pondering what to do about the Limited cards, which has been a hot topic of discussion in the community lately. 

Essentially the Limited cards started off quite reasonably priced when they were initially released, but then boomed in price when thousands of new users joined the platform. 

Now the realisation seems to be hitting people that it is becoming increasingly difficult to win cards in the Limited divisions as more and more people join the game and the scores required to win a card go up.

Last week for example we scored 405 points (which is normally a very high score in the game), but only won a Tier 2 reward, well below what you would have won just a few weeks ago.

This will inevitably happen across all divisions but is happening most quickly in the Limited divisions because the number of entries is increasing most rapidly there.

Once you get to the point where there are 1000 of each Ajax, Bayern Munich, PSG and Liverpool player, if you don’t have a team of these (or similar) elite cards then it will be extremely tough to win a prize. And even if you do, there could still be many duplicate lineups and you may struggle to win anything of note.

So it seems that users are selling a lot of the medium and lower tier Limited cards as this begins to dawn on them. We are not sure where this leaves the future of the game, again unless they introduce some sort of restriction on the star cards to make it more competitive and give value to these mid-tier cards again – which the team seem very reluctant to do. 

 

The Elusive Progression Bar and the Reward-Affordability Trap

Where we largely see the future of the game is in the long-awaited Progression Bar. This will supposedly allow you to win prizes based on accumulating points over an extended timeframe (e.g. 2-3 months) rather than just on a weekly basis. You will be playing against the game rather than other users. 

The reason we see this as the future of the game is it will still give you engagement if your team isn’t scoring 400+ points each week, which as described above will increasingly be needed to win a decent prize. 

If your team consistently scores 300-350 points per week, then you would still be engaged as you work your way towards a target for a prize, rather than lamenting that this kind of score is no longer good enough to win you a prize on the main leaderboard. 

However, the catch with this is making it both attractive enough to the user whilst being affordable enough for Sorare. We suspect the delay in introducing the Progression Bar – which now looks like it will be delayed for another few months – is due at least in part to working out a) what their liability would be under this new structure and b) what they can actually afford. 

The problem is not so much now when they are growing fast and only paying out around 10% of their revenues in prizes, but what would happen if they stopped growing and the long-term liabilities they had created during their growth phase. 

This was painfully apparent in the case of Football Index, who from all the documents that were released recently it appears were able to afford payouts up until the point when they stopped growing, but then without enough money coming in the payouts became less and less affordable, until the point they ultimately went bust (not to mention that they crazily went and increased payouts to try and attract new users, which just accelerated their demise). 

So the question is what can Sorare afford to pay out on average, per user? If they grow to a million users as they plan to, the liabilities could be quite substantial.

At the moment for example you can easily build an ETH grinder team for an amount that you could earn back in less than a year – and potentially keep earning hundreds of Euros a month for years to come. Great for you as a user, but not so good as a business model for the company. 

Example of an “ETH grinder” team that can win you 0.01 or 0.02 ETH per gameweek – around €35 or €70 at today’s prices.

 

Thankfully not everyone is just buying ETH grinder teams though and a huge amount of money is spent on elite cards to compete at the top end, where the payouts (i.e. for podium finishes) are just a tiny fraction of Sorare’s earnings on those cards. In fact one of the least appreciated aspects of Sorare’s business model is that a substantial portion of their prizes – cards – cost them virtually nothing to produce. 

Sorare also have the Legend cards and soon to be released “Moments” both of which should follow a similar model of making substantial revenues for Sorare whilst only committing them to minimal additional payouts. The more they can develop these revenue streams, the more likely it is they can afford to offer an attractive Progression Bar – a win-win for everyone. 

 

The Case for a Native Sorare Cryptocurrency

If Sorare really wanted to reduce their liabilities and ensure long-term sustainability though, one feature they could consider would be the introduction of their own cryptocurrency. 

They could use this cryptocurrency (let’s call it the “Sorare Coin” for now) to pay out a portion of the prizes each week. A native, in-game cryptocurrency is commonly used in other play-to-earn games such as F1 Delta Time, Revv Motorsport and the soon to be released DeRace horse racing game. 

Essentially the company creates the token out of then air and then assigns it a value. It sounds crazy but this is in reality is what has happened with hundreds of cryptocurrencies. There is no cost other than the initial set-up of the cryptocurrency and some small maintenance. 

Then the gaming company can pay out prizes in this token. Let’s say for example that one Sorare Coin was worth $1 and they had to pay out a million dollar of prizes in a gameweek. Then they would simply issue a million Sorare Coins, rather than having to pay out a million dollars worth of ETH. 

Users can then exchange their Sorare Coins to other cryptocurrencies or fiat, just as they do now with their ETH winnings.

Typically such in-game cryptocurrencies can also be used to purchase in-game items. In F1 Delta Time for example that can be new tyres, helmets, gloves etc to improve performance.

We are already seeing something like this in the side game Soraremega – although it should be stressed at this stage the “mega coins” are just an in-game coin and not a cryptocurrency. But the possibility is there for the future – for both Sorare and the side-games.

 

Conclusion – An Uncertain Future

Whether Sorare go down the route of introducing their own cryptocurrency or not remains to be seen – and certainly we have not seen it much discussed amongst the team so it doesn’t seem likely in the short term at least. 

What it would do though is help to ensure the long-term sustainability of the game – something we and many others do have concerns about at the moment. 

With it becoming harder and harder to win card prizes and Sorare having to potentially reduce their payouts to ensure they are affordable, we are left feeling rather uncertain about the future. 

If both the chances of winning a card and the payouts were to drop then it would make the game a lot less attractive to us and other users. 

Whilst we are in this uncertain stage awaiting details of the Progression Bar, it seems only sensible to withdraw some funds and de-risk from the game.

The reason we have not withdrawn entirely is that we have faith the team can work things out to be both sustainable and affordable – whilst also eventually dealing with the niggles mentioned above.   

Hopefully we will see progress on these matters in the near future but until then we will remain cautious and continue to de-risk as we go along. 

 

 

 

 

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Sorare – Live Results Tracker

1st September 2021

Sorare is a new platform that combines digital trading cards with fantasy football and is a project we are very excited about.

It’s a bit like online versions of Panini stickers which you buy and can then enter into fantasy football contests to win prizes.

It is relatively new but has seen tremendous growth recently, having raised $50m in venture capital funding earlier this year. If you want to know more about Sorare and how it works, please check out our full Guide here. 

We are tracking our own progress on Sorare below.

Just a reminder to only invest an amount you are willing to lose in a new platform like this, in the same way as if following a tipster you would set aside a betting bank you would be willing to lose if the tipster had a really bad run. 

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

Anyway, how has it been going on Sorare? 

 

Results Update

I (Dan) joined back in February and had been making steady progress until a few weeks ago…when things really started to take off!

It all got going in Gameweek 192 (13th – 17th August) when I achieved my best ever score of 413 points and finished 8th in Champion America Division 3, for which I won my first ever “Star Rare” card. These are the top category cards and are reserved for the truly elite level players (and starting goalkeepers which have very high value on Sorare due to their scarcity).

If you won a Star Rare card in the Champion Europe region for example, you would be talking about a player like Mbappe, Neymar, Kimmich or Lewandowksi which are worth thousands of dollars.

Sadly in the Champion America region we are not talking about such superstars, but still very good players within their own league. 

Anyway, I was absolutely buzzing about my first ever Star Rare win and couldn’t wait to see who I had won. You receive a card at random from the pool within the respective tier you finished in, so you don’t know who you will win but you can see the list of potential cards you could win. 

In the end when I turned the card over in the reward section, I was slightly disappointed with the card I won, which was an Eloy Room card. 

He’s a starting goalkeeper for Colombus Crew and had been selling for around $1,000 a month or two ago, although more recently had fallen to around the $700-$800 range. 

It wasn’t a bad card by any means, but I felt was slightly worse than average in terms of what I could have won from the Star Rare pool. 

In any event, I sold the card and invested the funds elsewhere on improving my squad.

The fun didn’t stop there though. After waiting six months to win my first Star Rare on Sorare, it was a bit like London buses as just a week later I won my second!

Again it was in the Champion America region and this time I managed 410 points and finished 4th in Division 4. Sadly I just missed out on the podium and receiving one of the cash prizes of nearly €500 but was still delighted to finish so high up.

This time I was a bit more circumspect about the reward opening and tried to not get my hopes up too high. 

Thankfully I fared a little better and won a Sean Johnson card, who is one of the top goalkeepers in the MLS and the US national team number two. His value is around $1,000 and his scores are also higher than Room’s, so I was pleased with the win. 

That gameweek I also won just my second ever Champion Europe card after finishing 66th in Division 4. I won an Eljif Elmas card, who is a very promising young midfielder at Napoli valued at around $300, so I was pleased with that win as well. 

As if all that wasn’t enough though, the very next week I won my first ever Tier 1 card after finishing 9th in the Challenger Europe region and won an Anthony Morris card, who is a goalkeeper for Belgian club Royal Union Saint-Gilloise and is valued at around $1,000. 

So three weeks, three goalkeeper wins and around $3,00 worth of cards won – amazing stuff! 

 

Huge Return on Investment

The last three weeks on Sorare really brought home what an astonishing return on investment you can achieve on the platform. 

Each of the teams that won a $1,000 card cost around $2,000 or less to put together – so that’s a 50% ROI in one week!

My total earnings since I joined Sorare back in February now stand at 0.45 ETH in threshold wins, which is about $1,5000 at today’s prices, plus around $6,500 in card wins. 

So I’m very close to having made my initial deposits back, plus now have a squad worth many times more than what I paid for it and that is capable of continuing to win me rewards in the future.

Of course, it is worth pointing out that all this is only real profit once you have withdrawn the funds to your bank account, so for the time being I am sitting on a “paper profit” rather than a real one. 

Overall though I feel very happy with the position I’m in after six months on the platform. I am competing in multiple regions and in multiple divisions, have improved my squad considerably and have learned a huge amount in my time on Sorare. Most of all it’s been a lot of fun! 

A shout-out to some of the top content creators who have helped me in my journey – Quinny, the Sorare Podcast (Hibee and YNWA), John Nellis, the Sorare Andrews, MDJ and many more. Their content has really helped me avoid some pitfalls and refine my strategy over the last six months and is well worth checking out. 

 

Developments on Sorare

As always it’s been a breathless time on Sorare with so much going on at the company. 

You may well have seen our recent update on the new Limited cards, but if you didn’t the brief summary is that this is a new category of cards with up to 1,000 of each player being minted each season.

As you can see, these new cards have a very alluring yellow colour which is quite difficult to resist…

It also means with 1,000 of each card being minted every season there are much cheaper cards on the market and it has opened the door to thousands of new managers entering the game.

Judging by this chart from from Soraredata, a huge number of managers have been walking through that door, with exponential growth having been seen since the launch of the Limited cards. Let’s hope that continues. 

There have also been a load of new clubs and even new leagues launched since our last update, with the Austrian Bundesliga having been added and the first Swiss club joining in the shape of FC Sion. 

Other new clubs joining Sorare have included Monaco, Rennes and Lorient which beefs up the Ligue 1 contingent to 10 clubs now.   

Sorare have also been advertising at some La Liga matches which is good to see. Hopefully that indicates they are going to be turning on the taps on the marketing front in the coming months and really starting to kick on now that they have the layer 2 upgrade and new scarcity up and running. It would be great to see 100,000 users on the platform by the end of the year (30,000 currently). 

There have been one or two bugs and issues cropping up on the platform recently but the team always seem to react quickly and effectively to these which is good to see.

Certainly there is nothing that strikes us a major long-term issue for the platform and the only worry seems to be the number of whingers there are on Discord. Thankfully we rarely go on there and the community on Twitter and in general is very helpful and positive. Our advice would just be to avoid the general discussion chat room on Discord completely!

Things have also gone a bit quiet on the reported $500m fundraise, so we don’t know if that has fallen through or is just taking a long time to negotiate. Either way we wouldn’t say they need those funds, they seem to be making a lot of money anyway and could probably fund a lot of growth organically. Plus they did raise $50m back in February so presumably still have a decent portion of that left to use. 

 

Closing Thoughts on a Six Month Journey

I said to someone recently I believe Sorare is the biggest development in this space since the introduction of Betfair twenty years ago, which completely revolutionised sports trading and betting (technically Sorare isn’t betting of course but would still sit within the sports trading/fantasy sports space).

That may sound like a bold statement, but the reason I said it is not just the amazing returns I have achieved over the last six months, but more importantly the level of engagement with this platform is so much higher than anything I have experienced before. Personally I find it a hundred times more engaging than any fantasy sports game I have played before. 

Being able to actually own the cards, play across so many different regions and in various side-games,  have all your scores count (unless you get a dreaded DNP of course!) and earn fantastic rewards all combines to create a hugely engrossing experience. 

If I’ve found that to be the case (and I know other users who say the same), then the chances are thousands – or even millions – of other football fans out there will do too. There’s a mantra in venture capital that if you test a new product out and think it’s fantastic and want to own it or use it yourself, then that’s a good sign the company is on to something and other people probably will aswell. Your own endorsement is the best endorsement, as it were. 

Where does Sorare go from here? Who knows, but if they can make it a little more accessible in terms of reducing the cryptocurrency element and improving the onboarding process to reduce the complexity for new users, then the sky’s the limit in our view. 

Of course, nothing is guaranteed in life and it could all still go pear-shaped, so we would repeat the warning at the beginning that you should only put in an amount you would be willing to lose if it all went wrong. 

If you do that though and take the time to learn how it works, then there is a good chance you will find it an amazingly rewarding and engrossing game to play. 

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

 

 

 

 

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Sorare – Live Results Tracker

24th July 2021

Sorare is a new platform that combines digital trading cards with fantasy football and is a project we are very excited about.

It’s a bit like online versions of Panini stickers which you buy and can then enter into fantasy football contests to win prizes.

It is relatively new but has seen tremendous growth recently, having raised $50m in venture capital funding earlier this year. If you want to know more about Sorare and how it works, please check out our full Guide here. 

We are tracking our own progress on Sorare below.

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

Just a reminder to only invest an amount you are willing to lose in a new platform like this, in the same way as if following a tipster you would set aside a betting bank you would be willing to lose if the tipster had a really bad run. 

Anyway, how has it been going on Sorare? 

 

Results Update

I (Dan) joined back in February and have been moving along steadily, although things have started to pick up recently.

On Sorare the rewards you can win in the fantasy contests are either cards (which you can then either sell or keep and use in the fantasy contests), or the cryptocurrency Ethereum (ETH). 

In terms of rewards, I have now won 0.31 ETH, which is worth around $667 at today’s prices. I have also won seven card rewards on top, worth approximately $925. 

I have just had my best gameweek, winning a Tier 2 card in Champion America and a Tier 3 (plus some ETH) in Global All-Star. 

Sadly the cards I received weren’t the best, but I was able to sell them quickly and can now use those funds to strengthen my squad.

On that front, I have been strengthening recently in the Champion America region as prices have come down considerably there – probably due to increasing supply as there have been a lot of auctions of MLS players lately.

As I have been having the most success in that region it makes sense to try and push on and see if I can get into the higher echelons where the prizes can be fantastic. I wasn’t that far off a Tier 1 reward this week for example, which can mean a card worth around $500 if you get lucky in the reward pool. 

 

Return of Challenger Europe

Looking further afield, the European Challenger region kicks off this week with the return of the Russian and Belgian leagues. Sadly my squad isn’t too strong in those leagues at the moment so I am not expecting great rewards over the next couple of weeks.

I had to resist the temptation to FOMO into buying some players as prices started to get ridiculous over the last week or two in those divisions – again probably a product of supply and demand dynamics, with a lot of people wanting players but there being limited supply due to no auctions of them for a while. 

However, I did take the opportunity to buy some players from the Portuguese and Dutch leagues, which kick off in two and three weeks respectively and where prices haven’t got out of hand…yet. One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned on this platform so far is it really pays to plan ahead and do your transfer business early. Be Klopp not Levy basically. 

Fortunately my purchase of Eran Zahavi of PSV actually paid immediate dividends as he helped himself to a hat-trick in the Champions League qualifier against Galatasaray in midweek, scoring the maximum 100 and landing me some nice rewards in the process. 

Stacking

There’s been a lot of talk recently on the various podcasts and forums about “stacking” – the process of using players from the same team in your lineup. That worked for me this week with a mini PSV attacking stack of Gotze and Zahavi combining very nicely, actually directly assisting each other for one of the goals.

And interesting research published on Twitter from the Football Economist showed that a significant proportion of prizes are won by lineups with “stacks” in them – whether that be defensive, attacking or a combination of both.

It makes sense really, particularly the point that for a defensive stack you are only looking for a single independent event (a clean sheet) versus two if you have a mixed defensive lineup from different teams. Plus of course you have some teams that totally dominate their leagues and whose players tend to rack up great scores together. Or a team could just have an easy fixture where you are expecting them to cruise to a 4-0 win. 

In light of this I will be looking to build some stacks, probably around the players I already have rather than starting from scratch.

The good news is I have the makings of some good stacks already:-

  • Juventus: Bonucci, Bentancur, Cuadrado, Dybala & Morata
  • Roma: Florenzi, Pellegrini, Mkhitaryan & Dzeko
  • Benfica: Silva & Seferovic
  • PSV: Gotze & Zahavi
  • Chicago: Shuttleworth & Calvo

So I’ll be looking to add to those and build around some of the other players I have who could form part of a decent stack if I added one or two players.

 

Sorare News

As ever there’s been loads going on at Sorare, with an impressive pace of development being maintained. This week we had an AMA with the team who went through some questions from the community.

You can read the full transcript here but the key takeaways were:

  1. The introduction of a new scaling solution to enable faster and cheaper transactions
  2. Two new leagues to be added soon and some new clubs
  3. No more One Shot League (which was a free competition for the Jupiler League)
  4. The potential of improved monetary rewards – details awaited on that
  5. Everything else is still a work in progress

The scaling solution was introduced on Wednesday and there were quite a few teething problems with it. We sold some cards last night and it took a few hours for the sales to go through, so clearly it is not “instant” yet. Hopefully this will improve in time as its smooth operation is essential for Sorare’s growth plans.

Some people were disappointed to see the One Shot League disappear but sadly it was rife with manipulation as some people multi-accounted, giving themselves a huge unfair advantage. Perhaps future iterations of side games will figure out a way to stop this.

In terms of the overall picture of Sorare’s development, the key things at the moment are getting the scaling to work smoothly and then introducing the new scarcity. There is no date on the latter but hopefully by the end of the Summer.

Then they can turn on the taps on the marketing and things can really take off. In the meantime we are still really enjoying the game and building a squad for the future.

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

 

 

 

 

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Sorare – Live Results Tracker

8th July 2021

Sorare is a new platform that combines digital trading cards with fantasy football and is a project we are very excited about.

It is relatively new but has seen tremendous growth recently, having just raised $50m in venture capital funding. If you want to know more about Sorare and how it works, please check out our full Guide here. 

We are tracking our own progress on Sorare below.

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

Just a reminder to only invest an amount you are willing to lose in a new platform like this, in the same way as if following a tipster you would set aside a betting bank you would be willing to lose if the tipster had a really bad run. 

Anyway, how has it been going on Sorare? 

 

Results Update

I (Dan) joined back in February and it’s been quite a journey since then. 

In terms of rewards, I have now won 0.26 ETH, which is worth around $560 at today’s prices. I have also won five card rewards on top. 

Most recently I bagged my first ever Tier 2 reward after finishing 24th in Champion America. The card I received was Djordje Mihailovic, who plays for Montreal in the MLS. 

That is an excellent reward and the card is currently being listed for around $430 on the secondary market. Since I received the reward he has posted scores of 77, 87 and 83 which is top class stuff. 

He is an attacking midfielder who sees a lot of the ball and is quite creative, which is exactly what you want in these fantasy football games like Sorare. He is also only 22 so has years of potential utility ahead and is eligible for the under-23s game for the next two seasons, which is an added bonus. 

Overall I’m delighted with this reward and it will help me to push on in Champion America and hopefully win some more rewards.

I remarked last time that it was ironic I was doing best in the Americas region which I know the least about, but that trend has continued and my squad is starting to develop quite nicely now.

The only downside is that with the CONCACAF Gold Cup this month (which is kind of like the Copa America for central/north America) my squad is being decimated as a number of my players go off to play in that tournament, which at the moment unfortunately isn’t scored on Sorare. Apparently that’s due to Opta not supplying the requisite data. 

So I am currently debating whether to add a couple of players for the next few weeks so I can still field a team in Champion America. I see it as a bit like “renting” cards – I would just hold them for a few weeks and then sell them on again afterwards. As long as you can get a similar price as what you paid for them and have the cash flow to do it, then it doesn’t seem like a bad idea to me. 

 

New European Season and Taking Money Out

It’s not too long now until the new European season kicks off. In fact some of the “Challenger Europe” leagues like Belgium and Russia get underway in just a couple of weeks’ time, with other leagues gradually getting their seasons started throughout August.

In lieu of this I’ve been doing some wheeling and dealing on the transfer market to build my squad for when the new season gets underway. 

Most of my shopping has been focused on Challenger Europe as I feel like my Champion Europe team is already pretty strong. 

So I added Otavio (or Otavinho as was previously known) from Porto, who has some very good scores on SO5 and looks like exactly the sort of playmaker type I like.

There have however been some rumours of him potentially joining Liverpool. If he does so I would expect his price to increase and I would then probably offload him and use the funds to buy another Challenger Europe midfielder. I see it as a kind of win-win scenario. 

I am also looking for a new Challenger Europe forward as I was over-reliant on Haris Seferovic last season and it looks like he may also be off to the Premier League in any event. I have a few options in mind so hopefully will get a deal done before the new season kicks off. 

I have also started to take some money out of Sorare. I have been fortunate in that my portfolio has increased quite a lot in value since I joined, so together with the rewards I have won it enables me to start withdrawing some profits and get closer to my long-term goal of playing with the house’s money. 

 

Sorare News

There always seem to be exciting new things going on at Sorare and recently it has been no exception. The Belgian national team were just added to the platform, which meant the introduction of the one and only Kevin De Bruyne. That would be a fantastic card to own but sadly well out my price range, and probably that of 95% of Sorare managers. 

That means there are now three national teams on the platform, with France and Germany having preceded Belgium. However, it may be something of a jinx because all three teams were knocked out of the Euros shortly after being added to Sorare. Here’s hoping England aren’t added before Sunday!

Anyway, in other developments Sorare have also recently increased the reward payouts, with more cards being distributed as prizes. The increase is really noticeable, with Global All-Star Division 4 this week for example giving cards out all the way to 328th place. 

They also announced something of a rejig of the award structure yesterday, with more rewards being allocated to Division 3. This is something we called for in our last update (below), so it’s great to once again see Sorare responding to feedback from the community and adjusting their plans as a result.

There will also be *even more* rewards being distributed overall, with new DNP (did not play) cards being handed out. We imagine this might be as a “Tier 4” reward.

Finally, there are still rumours swirling about Sorare potentially raising $500m in venture capital, although none of these rumours have been confirmed so it’s difficult to know if they are true or not. As we said before though, if they are true it would be extremely bullish for the future of Sorare.

All in all then there is a huge amount to be positive about with Sorare and we are loving our journey on the platform. It just keeps getting better all the time and has developed hugely in just the few months we have been following it. The next year or two could be quite something to watch…

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

 

 

 

 

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Sorare – Live Results Tracker

22nd June 2021

Sorare is a new platform that combines digital trading cards with fantasy football and is a project we are very excited about.

It is relatively new but has seen tremendous growth recently, having just raised $50m in Series A funding. If you want to know more about Sorare and how it works, please check out our full Guide here. 

We are tracking our progress on Sorare below.

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

Just a reminder to only invest an amount you are willing to lose in a new platform like this, in the same way as if following a tipster you would set aside a betting bank you would be willing to lose if the tipster had a really bad run. 

Anyway, how has it been going on Sorare? 

 

Results Update

I (Dan) joined back in February and it’s been quite a journey since then. 

In terms of rewards, I have now won 0.22 ETH, which is worth around $418 at today’s prices. I have also won four card rewards, which in total are worth around $250-$350. Those are great returns for just a few months on the platform and my portfolio has also increased significantly in value. 

My latest card win came just this week in the shape of Seattle forward Will Bruin after I finished 80th in Champion America Division 4:

It’s quite ironic in some ways that my best results have come in the Americas region, which I know almost nothing about, whilst it has been more of a struggle in Europe where I have a lot more knowledge of players and teams!

Part of the reason for that is I managed to put together a decent MLS team during the off season back in February when prices were cheap. I picked up some top names like Brad Guzan in goal, Francisco Calvo in defence and Jack Price in midfield relatively cheaply and they have been performing very well for me. 

Recently I also swapped out Latif Blessing who has been benched for Los Angeles and brought in Gustavo Bou who looks like a solid performer. I also made a couple of additions to the squad with MLS legend Diego Valeri and Columbus forward Kevin Molino, who was my most expensive MLS purchase to date. He is coming back from injury but had some great scores previously so if he can get back to that kind of form I should be laughing.

As I say I didn’t have much knowledge of MLS players when I started on Sorare, it was just a case of using Soraredata and doing my own research. Just shows you don’t have to be a football expert to do well on Sorare! 

I have also been putting teams into the new “Global Nations” league which is a combination of the Euros and Copa America, but sadly without much success. 

One of the issues with that league is under the new dynamic rewards structure, prizes are based on the number of games played and there are obviously only a small number of games in these tournaments relative to regular domestic leagues.

So only the top 50 managers get prizes and you have to score really highly to get into that top 50. Sadly I’ve had too many DNPs (did not play) which has scuppered my chances. These international line-ups seem much harder to predict than club lineups! Perhaps Sorare will add a substitute option at some stage in the future…

In any event, I’m really looking forward to the start of the new European league season as I have been doing quite a bit of wheeling and dealing and have my teams primed to go. 

 

Sorare News

There’s been a huge amount going on with Sorare itself, even since our last update in May. We’re just amazed with the product development and how quickly they are moving.

They have onboarded their first national teams, with firstly France and then today the German national team. That has meant the addition of players who weren’t previously on the platform like Pogba, Griezmann, Kante, Rudiger and Gosens. 

There’s actually been quite a battle between the players themselves to get some of these cards, with Griezmann bidding on his own unique card but being beaten to it by a user called Max M who paid a cool $114,000 for it!

https://twitter.com/SorareBot/status/1406718855809011718

Grizou did mange to pick up the Super Rare version of his own card though for €33,000. Ousmane Dembélé has also joined the platform and put together a pretty tasty collection. The more top footballers that join Sorare the more free publicity it is for them and the further validation it provides for the platform.

As mentioned above the new reward structure has been introduced recently. This new “dynamic” structure means that the rewards in a gameweek are based on the number of eligible clubs playing in that region.

In essence it means more card rewards being given out overall and when we get busy weekends during the European season there should be a really good number of cards being given out. We have already benefited from the new reward structure with our 80th place in Champion America which previously wouldn’t have won a reward.

There was a useful chart posted on Twitter recently which showed the chances of winning a card in each division and it is now over 10% in many of them, whereas under the old structure it had been less than 5%. Having more regular wins is great for engagement and we see it as a win-win for everyone.

The only division that seems to have suffered is Division 3 which it has now become very difficult to win a prize in. We’re not sure why this is – whether it’s an oversight by Sorare or for another reason, but hopefully they will take another look at it because D3 is quite a useful way for people to progress and it incentivizes mangers to buy Super Rare cards, so to devalue D3 seems strange.

Anyway, in addition to these changes there are also some big updates coming soon. These include:

  • Ethereum scaling solution, which is due by the end of July and will mean instant card transfers, lower fees and an all-round smoother experience.
  • New scarcity, which will significantly lower the costs of entry for new users and is much anticipated. We have some thoughts on how this may work but will publish those in a separate blog post.
  • Academy League, which will be limited to certain lower tier cards (e.g. with an average score under 45) and should be a great leveller for the lower budget accounts versus the larger ones. We just hope they make the rewards attractive enough for this league to entice people to enter it and enable progression. If they do it could really add utility to the lower tier cards and be great for the platform.
  • Progression bar – details are awaited on this but in short it will replace the current ETH threshold reward and be based on scores accumulated over a longer period (i.e. up to three months). Getting this right is really important because the ETH threshold is a big draw for many managers and indeed is what attracted us to the platform originally. 

So a huge amount to look forward to there. The last three developments don’t have fixed dates on them but we hope they will be ready for the new football season.

 

Conclusion

Finally a word on some rumours that have been circulating suggesting Sorare is in the process of raising further VC funding – up to $500m reportedly. Interestingly one article quotes Sorare as denying this so we don’t know if it’s true or not and in some ways it would seem strange to raise so much funding after just having raised $50m a few months ago. If it is true though it would be very bullish for the future of Sorare. We will just have to wait and see on that one…

All in all though the picture looks very positive and we are really enjoying our journey on Sorare. There are still a few kinks to iron out like the reward structure and fairness, but we are hopeful they will get these things right and then the sky’s the limit for Sorare.

Sign up here and get a FREE Rare Card once you have bought your first five Rare cards at auction.

 

 

 

 

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Sorare News Update

7th May 2021

Sorare is a new platform that combines digital trading cards with fantasy football and is a project we are very excited about.

It is relatively new but has seen tremendous growth recently, having just raised $50m in Series A funding. If you want to know more about Sorare and how it works, please check out our Guide here. 

We are tracking our progress on Sorare and that of the platform itself here.

There have been some big announcements lately, a number of them coming via an AMA (Ask Me Anything) session held yesterday, which you can read the full transcript of here, or view on Sorare’s Discord channel. 

There was some great news in there, including measures to address some major concerns we had with the platform, plus there were lots of other positive developments announced.

We will take a look at the key announcements now and what they mean for Sorare.

 

Academy League

We had written at length in previous updates below and a separate post here that our main concern with Sorare was the growing disparity between the early adopters/big whales and everyone else. In summary the game structure was making it increasingly hard for a new user or one on a small-medium budget to compete with the larger accounts and the gap was only getting wider each week.  

The good news is that Sorare have gone a long way to addressing this via a new Academy League they plan to introduce and new progression element (more on that below).

In terms of the new Academy League, Sorare describe it as follows:-

“A single division league with no scarcity bonuses, max 1 Common, and a max average score of ~45 (value might change). If a Manager entered at least one lineup in any SO5 League above Division 4 in a given Gameweek, they will not be allowed to enter the Academy. Rewards for the Academy will be bonus XP, ETH and other exclusive prizes.”

This is just the sort of thing we were calling for and are really pleased the Sorare team have listened to feedback from the community and gone for this option. 

It will allow low-mid budget managers to compete on a level playing field in an arena where the big whales won’t have a huge advantage. In fact with the interesting detail that you will be prevented from entering the Academy League if you joined a division higher than 4 in that gameweek, it means these managers might not have to compete against the big whales at all in this league. 

It should also give greater utility to the lower-end cards, which suddenly could have significant value if you can find a player of strong potential who has just had a bad run of form or been on the bench recently etc. And it could really enhance the trading of cards at the lower end as people may look at the upcoming few fixtures for an eligible player with a soft run of games coming up. 

Our only suggestions would be to perhaps have the cut-off at 50 points average score rather than 45 and for the “other exclusive prizes” to include card prizes, which we think is essential if this new Academy League is going to genuinely offer progression. 

We are also not sure over how many gameweeks the average will be based – five seems to be the one used on Sorare itself but perhaps a longer timeframe like 15 or 40 weeks would be fairer. 

Overall though a great addition and exactly what was needed. 

 

Progress Bar

Another key element to helping managers progress will be a “beat the game” element that will allow managers to compile points across multiple gameweeks and win prizes accordingly. It will replace the current weekly ETH threshold payouts and be measured on a progress bar showing you how close you are to reaching certain targets.

Sorare describe the Progress Bar as follows:-

“There are 4 reward thresholds on the Progress Bar, each requiring a different number of points, and each threshold offering a better prize than the last. When a Manager’s Progress Bar reaches a certain threshold, the Manager can choose to claim the reward OR ignore the reward and continue earning points until they reach the next, better threshold.”

You will only get points towards your target if you did not win a card and did not participate in a division higher than 4 in that gameweek. When managers claim a reward they can do so in cards, ETH or XP value and each progress bar will run over a three month period.

We think this is a good replacement for the current ETH thresholds and is a clever one because it will encourage longer-term engagement in Sorare.

It will also benefit those managers (like ourselves) who often hit good scores of say 280-320 but currently don’t really get rewarded for these scores (outside of hitting the ETH thresholds in Global All-Star Division 4 that is). With the new setup every score counts and getting these scores consistently should be a really good thing and help to hit those targets to unlock prizes. 

We will wait to see what the target scores and prizes are, but presuming they are reasonably good (and sustainable of course!) then this should be a really positive change to the structure of Sorare. 

 

New Scarcity Coming Soon

We are pleased to hear that a new scarcity is coming soon (second half of 2021) and will work as we had expected –  the new scarcity cards will have their own divisions which will reward the new scarcity cards. 

This will mean the new scarcity shouldn’t negatively impact the value of rare cards – in fact they could well end up enhancing them because the new scarcity is likely to bring a lot of new managers to the game, a certain percentage of whom will want to move up to competing with rare cards in the higher divisions. 

Overall bringing in a new scarcity is one of the most important elements to growing Sorare as the cost of the current rare cards is one of the main barriers to entry for new managers at the moment (along with the cryptocurrency element – but more on that below).

 

ETH Scaling/Cryptocurrency Issues

Very positive news that Sorare are only “weeks away” from introducing an ETH scaling solution that will mean faster and cheaper transactions and all-round smoother experience. This is great news as the slowness and expense of the Ethereum network at the moment, whilst obviously not Sorare’s fault, was a source of considerable frustration to users. 

It will also mean Sorare aren’t paying huge gas fees for card transfers which will make them more profitable, so a win for everyone. 

We were also intrigued by comments from Nicolas that they are exploring options around a stablecoin, which would mean managers no longer having to factor ETH fluctuations into their use of Sorare.

 

Collectability Game

More intriguing news about a collection game that will give a whole new utility to cards. Carl, the new game economist, reported:

“We are planning to introduce a full collection game with its own leaderboard system that will recognize collections from each club and each season. This will be a new way to play Sorare, and a new utility for a lot of cards in the game.”

This is a wise move as any additional utility they can give cards and bring in other types of users will benefit the platform as a whole. 

 

Global Nations League

Sorare recently announced that they will be including a whole host of international fixtures in the game, including:-

  • Euro 2021
  • U21 Euros
  • Copa America (from Group Stage)
  • World Cup Qualifiers UEFA (frm Group Stage)
  • World Cup Qual CONCACAF (Final Rnd)
  • World Cup Qual South America (from 1st Rnd)
  • World Cup Qual CAF (from 3rd Rnd)
  • World Cup Qual AFC (from 3rd Rnd)
  • AFC Champions League (from Group Stage)
  • Copa Libertadores (from Group Stage)
  • CONCACAF Champions League (from 1/8 Finals)

This is fantastic news and gives significant additional utility to cards as well as providing year-round action and enjoyment for managers. It should be good for attracting new managers around the upcoming Euros in particular.

On the AMA they announced that the Euros, Euro U21 and Copa America would be lumped together in a new “Global Nations” league, with a max of 1 common card and no scarcity bonuses. International players will also be scored for Global All-Star Division 4 and Global U23s.

Ideally we would have preferred a separate league for the Euros and Copa America but we can see it makes sense to have the international tournaments together from a logistical point of view. 

 

New Reward Structure Coming 27th May

It was also announced that the new reward structure – i.e. the additional card rewards – is due to be introduced from 27th May. We imagine this will be welcome news to all managers. 

 

Other News

There were a number of other titbits given away on the AMA, including:-

  • Marketing plans including working with footballers, influencers, clubs and others to grow the platform significantly
  • Enabling counter-offers and negotiation on trades
  • Introducing women’s football to the platform
  • Improving Rookie League/free-to-play element
  • New clubs being signed – today is the first Brazilian club, Atletico Mineiro 

All good stuff there and lots to look forward to.

 

Conclusion

There was a huge amount of information presented on the AMA and it was quite a lot to take in. Overall though it was excellent news all-round and we are more excited than ever about Sorare. 

Most importantly for us they have addressed the issue of fairness/progression which we had highlighted previously and felt was the platform’s biggest flaw. The new Academy League and progress-based rewards will go a long way to addressing those concerns. We hope these new elements become a focal point in terms of reward distribution as they could really help managers work their way up the leagues if given enough emphasis. 

Moreover it gives us confidence that the team are listening to feedback from the community and are prepared to adapt their plans accordingly. This should place them in great stead going forward. 

In terms of gameplay implications, we will have to see the details of the changes before being able to comment fully, but our initial reaction is they will give a lot more utility to the tier 2/3 cards. Those up-and-coming players or those who are out of form but have good potential or a favourable fixture list could become highly sought-after. We also see this increasing the trading of cards at the lower end. 

This new structure also puts considerable emphasis on Global All-Star Division 4 and the new Academy League, as only scores in those contests will count towards the Progress Bar targets. So we may see managers prioritising these divisions above others going forward.

Overall though there was so much good news in the AMA that it’s difficult not to be positive about the speed and skill with which Sorare are moving forward. It feels like chalk and cheese compared to some other (now defunct) football platforms, but we won’t go on about that now! 

The key to growing the platform now in our opinion is the new scarcity and the ETH scaling solutions/decoupling from crypto, which are the two main barriers to entry at the moment. If they get these right then we really think the sky’s the limit for Sorare.

You can sign up to Sorare here and get 10 free cards to get you started.

 

 

 

 

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Sorare Live Portfolio Tracker

13th April 2021

Sorare is a new platform that combines digital trading cards with fantasy football and is a project we are very excited about.

It is relatively new but has seen tremendous growth recently, having just raised $50m in Series A funding. If you want to know more about Sorare and how it works, please check out our Guide here. 

I (Dan) joined Sorare recently and purchased some cards. I will be recording my Sorare journey here on this page.

Just a quick reminder before getting on to the update – as usual please note this is not financial advice and is for educational purposes only. You should only invest an amount you are willing to lose all of in a platform like this, in the same way as if you were going to follow a tipster you should set aside a betting bank you would be willing to lose all of if the tipster had a really bad run. 

Anyway, that’s the formalities out the way, let’s get on with a look at how it’s been going.

Results Update

Okay so I have some good news to report in terms of my own results but also some issues to tackle with the way the platform operates at the moment.

Firstly in terms of my own results, I am pleased to say I won my first card this week! 

Yes, I finished 51st in the Challenger Europe Division 4 with a score of 381 points. That was largely thanks to a brilliant 100 (the maximum score possible) from striker Haris Seferovic of Benfica and a very good 94 from my new signing Yaroslav Rakitskiy of Zenit St Petersburg. 

The problem is that Sorare is so competitive now, that kind of score doesn’t win you a particularly good prize, but we will get on to that more below. 

For now, I am delighted to have just won any type of card and it actually looks like quite an interesting one, being an 18 year-old defender at Anderlecht who is already getting game time. The card value is only around €100 at the moment but is one I may hold onto to see how he develops in the future. 

And he has the same first name as a certain Mr Mbappe (different spelling), so perhaps that’s a good sign 🙂 

Anyway, in addition to the card reward, I have now won 0.1 ETH in payouts, which is around €191 at current prices. 

All that and I’ve only been on the platform a few weeks! 

Sorare is also such an engrossing platform. Haris Seferovic for example who scored the perfect 100 for me this week is a player I didn’t really know much about before I joined Sorare. Now I watch all his games though and am probably one of his biggest fans!

That’s what Sorare does in terms of sucking you in and getting you engrossed in following various players and leagues you wouldn’t otherwise have had much interest in. 

However, as much as I am enjoying it so far, there are some gripes with the way the platform works at the moment, which are worth discussing below because we believe it’s crucial the team addresses these if Sorare is to really grow and become a mass-market product.

 

Platform Issues – The “Squeezed Middle”

We mentioned this in our last update but it is worth emphasising again because it is becoming such a huge issue with the platform.

Essentially the gap between the top few percent of users (the “big whales”) and the rest is getting wider and wider each week and it’s becoming almost impossible for a new user to compete with them unless they have a massive – and we mean really massive  – budget.

This is because the top users hold all the best cards and totally dominate the fantasy contests. These top cards now cost thousands of Euros each so are simply not affordable for the vast majority of users. 

This is acting like a vicious cycle, because in winning the fantasy contests the big whales also win the best cards as rewards, only serving to increase their advantage further – and so on. 

One user won £9,500 worth of cards this week for example! 

What this is doing is creating a huge gap between that small percentage of users who were either early adopters or have massive budgets (or both) and everyone else. 

So the rest are essentially left fighting for scraps at the bottom end and have little or no hope of ever catching those at the top – unless something changes.

In effect that leaves most users having two options: –

  • Just pick up budget players to compete for the ETH threshold payouts each week;
  • Buy and sell cards and try to make a profit that way.

However, there should be a third option: new users should have the chance to work their way up the leagues through skill, research, knowledge and trading, but this possibility is very limited under the current structure. 

At the moment it’s a little pointless going for those players who are good but not amazing. Increasingly you need players who score 80+ points to stand a chance of winning cards – or the “Steady Eddy” types if you are just trying to grind out some ETH. 

The current structure is leaving out of a huge number of players in the middle, who could be valuable in a different structure. It is also leaving out a huge number of potential users who want to do more than than just grind out the ETH but are frustrated by the ever-increasing advantage of the top users. It’s a bit like there’s a “squeezed middle” on Sorare currently. 

If Sorare don’t tackle this head-on, we could see the platform really struggling to grow. If it’s just not viable to do anything other than grind out ETH every week – which don’t get us wrong is a good reward – then users are going to probably lose interest at some point and either join a competitor who has a fairer structure or just quit altogether. 

This wouldn’t be good news for the big whales either, because if the platform doesn’t grow then the value of their cards will fall – and eventually may be worth little or nothing. 

There are some things Sorare can do to fix this though. Let’s take a look at those now.

 

How to Give More Users a Chance

Okay, so what can Sorare do to address the current imbalance on the platform? Well, we have three suggestions for them:-

  1. Limit use of the top cards – although the big whales obviously won’t like this, Sorare could limit the use of the very top cards to say one per team entry. So for example you could only use one of Mbappe, Neymar, Kroos, Kimmich etc per team you enter. This would give other users who don’t own these cards a chance to compete. We understand there are restrictions like this in other fantasy sports games. Of course there will be knock-on effects as the value of those top players would be likely to drop whilst the value of players just below that top tier would be likely to increase, but spread across a large number of players the effects should be manageable. 
  2. Spread rewards around more evenly – a review of the reward structure is ongoing so we may be superseded by events on this, but ideally we would like to see rewards spread around much more evenly. Currently in addition to winning cards worth thousands of Euros, the top three managers in each division also receive generous amounts of ETH on top. This seems rather unnecessary now given the huge rise in card prices, so you could take this cash and spread it around say the top 100 who just missed out on a card. You could also give rewards for an outstanding player performance like a 100 score, or for a certain team score (e.g. 320+). By spreading the awards around to more managers, it would give more users the chance to improve their squad and compete with the top managers. 
  3. Create new leagues and divisions – Sorare could add separate SO5 leagues and divisions for managers not in the top few percent to compete in. These separate leagues might have restrictions like maximum gallery values or player average scores for example. This sort of addition would probably only work when the platform is bigger and has the scope for more leagues, but is something to consider for the future.

In addition to these suggestions, Sorare are due to increase the rewards shortly so hopefully that should see more users winning cards/prizes and help to some extent too. 

The key to any changes though in our opinion is to address the gap between the top few percent of manages and the rest if the platform is to remain attractive to new and existing users and have the chance to really grow over the coming months and years. 

 

Summing Up

To sum up then we are really enjoying our journey on Sorare and are finding it a very engrossing platform. With some changes to its structure to give the majority of managers more of a chance to compete and work their way up the leagues, we think Sorare could really fly long term. 

You can sign up to Sorare here and get a free Rare Card once you have bought your first five Rare cards at auction.

 

 

 

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Sorare Live Portfolio Tracker

24th March 2021

Sorare is a new platform that combines digital trading cards with fantasy football and is a project we are very enthusiastic about.

It is relatively new, having launched in 2019 but since then has seen tremendous growth, raising $50m in Series A funding recently. If you want to know more about Sorare and how it works, please check out our Guide here. 

I (Dan) joined Sorare about a month ago and purchased some cards and will be recording my performance in the fantasy football games (called SO5 on the platform) here on this page.

So, how has it been going so far?

Well first up I should say I have been loving the platform. The game is really immersive, kind of addictive in fact, and it really gets you following your players and their performances closely. I’ve found myself watching random Portuguese and Belgian matches that I would never have watched otherwise! The whole concept is amazing and there’s so much potential for Sorare to grow and develop in the years to come. 

You can easily find yourself spending hours scouting players and studying their stats, looking for a bargain or the next hot prospect. There’s some great content out there on social media and YouTube now and a fast-growing community. We would recommend the Sorare Podcast if you are looking for interesting chats about the platform. 

You can sign up to Sorare here and get a free Rare Card once you have bought your first five Rare cards at auction.

Results

Anyway, getting on to my results, so far I have made 0.08 ETH in rewards, which has been made up of hitting the 250 point threshold four times. At today’s prices that’s about €117.

That’s a fantastic return in just a month on the platform and I’m well on my way to making back the initial investment I put in pretty quickly. My plan is to also sell a couple of players soon to recoup a large portion of my initial investment and then play “with the house’s money” in the long run. 

A shout-out to the players who have been performing well for me so far: Bentancur – before contracting Covid that is – was an absolute rock and is probably the best player in my gallery.

Seferovic of Benfica has also been on great form, smashing in the goals left, right and centre. Mario Hermoso looks a good signing and is the kind of dependable defender who should do well long-term. Daniil Fomin at Dynamo Moscow looks a bargain too for a young player with a lot of good scores already behind him. 

There have been a few underperformers too unfortunately – Ponce has been dropped at Spartak Moscow which is a little concerning and Arthur had a shocker in his last game but I think is still a quality player who should do well overall.

So far I haven’t really been close to winning a card though, which is a little disappointing but with so many new members joining Sorare recently it’s become incredibly competitive at the top end and generally you need at least 320 points to win a card now. The most I have been hitting is around 290 points.

Top-end “Vicious Cycle”

This actually touches on one of the issues with the game the way it is at the moment. The early adopters now have such an advantage in terms of holding all the best cards that they are totally dominating the fantasy contests.

This is acting like a vicious cycle, because in winning the contests they also win the best cards as rewards, only serving to increase their advantage further – and so on. 

So unless you have like 20 grand to invest now and challenge those users, it looks like everyone else is pretty much left fighting for scraps. 

You can still win a lesser card, which as I say is possible with a score of around 320. And those lesser cards can still be worth a few hundred Euros, plus you have the ETH threshold payouts, so the prizes are still very good overall. It’s just a bit frustrating to see that your chances of ever competing at the top end are almost gone already and those at the top are just increasing their advantage over you all the time.

I am not sure what Sorare can do to address this really. Perhaps creating more sub-divisions for people to enter as the platform grows – for example by country – would provide more diversity and give a greater number of users a chance.

The top managers would still dominate of course, but it might just allow some others a chance if you had a Russia-only league or Portugal-only league for example, where there is no Mbappe, Neymar or Kroos to steal the show every week.

Ubisoft’s One Shot League is a move in this direction of course as it involves just the Belgian Jupiler league and is more egalitarian. Perhaps we will see more of this, either within Sorare itself or in the offshoot games that are developed. 

Portfolio & Strategy   

Understanding some of these dynamics has led me to rethink my strategy a little lately. When I signed up, I was mainly aiming to just compile a solid team of players who could regularly help me hit the ETH threshold each week and amass a nice steady income from that. And to be honest, the prices went so crazy not long after I signed up that’s pretty much all you could do! 

Whilst that is still a sound strategy, the incentive to win cards is so strong – with that possibility of being able to “move up the ladder” by doing so – that I have slightly changed my approach. So now I am looking more for players who can hit big scores now and then rather than just the “Steady Eddy” types I was looking at before. A drop in card prices over the past couple of weeks has also helped in this regard.

So in to my gallery have come players like: Rafa Silva, Joao Mario, Angel Correa and Alexis Sanchez. 

There’s also another theme to these players – they are all players I know and have watched quite a lot of, either lately or over the years. Whilst it’s nice to scout those unheard-of players and find a few bargains, one thing I’ve found a little frustrating is in picking players based on their SO5 scores alone without knowing much about them, you can find those players dropped or losing form and left somewhat in the dark about how good they actually are. 

Having known quantities and players you know are top class provides a degree of security that whilst they may have dips in form now and then (as all players do), they have that underlying quality which will always shine through. Form is temporary, class is permanent as they say. 

Another aspect I’ve noticed recently is some people seem to be primarily using just a player’s recent scores to judge them. This might be because Sorare only displays a player’s last five scores on the platform, so people might be evaluating players largely based on that. It is creating some great value on players who are out of form in their last five games but have better long-term scores however.

New Reward Structure and Scarcity Level 

Sorare reported on Discord recently that they are working on a new reward structure and scarcity level. These are hugely important developments for the platform and it is important they get them right. 

In terms of the reward structure, this will be very welcome, should help the continued growth of the platform and to support card prices. Whilst the Sorare team have hinted at increasing the number of cards available to win, we actually think adding the ETH threshold reward to a couple of more leagues would be more beneficial. 

In terms of increasing the number of places that win a card, that would be good in itself but ultimately there are only so many cards they can give away before it starts cannibalizing their business model and ending up with too much dilution.

We don’t think they’ve reached that point yet and they could reasonably increase it to the extent that around 10% of entrants win a card prize, but ultimately it probably isn’t practical for them to go beyond that and long term as more and more users join Sorare, that percentage will probably come down over time.

With the ETH threshold payouts though they can make the platform hugely attractive to new users – after all that is the main reason we joined Sorare. Having that steady payout is a great incentive and really helps with enjoyment levels. Even when you know you’re not competing for the big card prizes, watching your players just sneak by the 250 or 205 point mark is a great buzz and keeps you hooked to the end of most gameweeks. 

Whilst we are conscious of the need to have a sustainable business model given what happened to Football Index recently, we think given the tens of millions they are bringing in through card sales they could easily add the ETH threshold to one or two more divisions. 

In the last gameweek for example they paid out 27.35 ETH in threshold payouts, which is around $47,000 at today’s prices. However, they are taking in around $400,000 per day in new card sales.

So when you consider they only have to pay out once every 3.5 days (and not at all in periods like the current international break), it should be more than comfortable for them to add the ETH threshold payout to one or two more leagues. 

However, at the same time we understand if they want to be cautious and don’t want to overextend themselves by making a financial commitment like this. So it would be understandable if they wanted to experiment with just adding the payout on an ad-hoc basis to start with and get some more data on the implications of it.

They added an ETH threshold payout for example to one of the Special Contests recently so they could experiment with adding it to a different league each week on a trial basis to see how it goes. 

As we say, we expect adding the ETH threshold payout to more leagues would do a lot to support card prices (as cards would then intrinsically have more value) so we expect this would be in Sorare’s interests as well. But we will leave it to them to come up with the best solution as they have shown themselves to be very adept at listening to the community and coming up with the right solutions so far. 

In terms of the new scarcity level, we covered that in some detail in our Sorare Strategy Guide, but the short version is that we think if done in the right way it should work well and encourage a lot of new users to join the platform, which in the long run should be good for everyone. 

Conclusion

All in all then we would sum up by saying we are loving Sorare and have become quite hooked on it. There are some issues to sort out as with any fast-growing new venture like this but we are confident they will solve the issues and continue to build an amazing platform. 

There are so many exciting developments happening all the time – we didn’t even mention the two new clubs coming on board – Galatasaray were added earlier in the week and there’s a new club due to be announced soon. Could be Milan, Dortmund, or another big club. Exciting times…

Sign up to Sorare and get a free Rare Card once you have bought your first five Rare cards at auction.

 

 

 

 

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Sorare Live Portfolio Tracker

5th March 2021

Sorare is a combination of fantasy football and digital trading cards and is a platform we are very enthusiastic about.

It is relatively new, having launched in 2019 but since then has seen tremendous growth, recently raising $50m in Series A funding. We have joined Sorare and purchased some cards and will be recording our performance in the fantasy football games here on this page.

If you want to know more about Sorare and how it works, please check out our Guide here. 

It is a little complicated at first but once you understand the concept it is great fun to be involved in and we are looking forward to recording our experiences on the platform.

Results So Far

To kick things off, here is a little summary of how we have got on so far:

We have played three “gameweeks” so far – which as mentioned in our guide are actually just a few days: one for the midweek fixtures and one for the weekend fixtures, meaning you get two “gameweeks” per week. 

Anyway, in our first gameweek from Feb 23-26 we scored 146 points in the Global All-Star Division 4, which wasn’t enough to win any prizes 🙁 .

However, in the next two gameweeks we managed to clear the 250 point threshold in the Global All-Star Division 4, landing us 0.02 ETH on each occasion, so we are around €50 up already in game rewards! 

We also made around €20 from a quick flip of a player (buying then selling for profit), so in total are €70 up. 

The value of our players has also increased substantially since we bought them – over 300% in fact – although we will not record that here as obviously those prices could go down again. We will only record banked profit for this trial. 

We now have a good number of players in our portfolio – or “gallery” as it is called on Sorare – so will be looking to enter a few different contests this weekend. We are aiming to enter three different contests which would give us a good spread and hopefully a decent chance of winning a prize!

So that’s our introduction to our experience of Sorare so far. In future updates we will take a look at some of the players in our gallery and why we picked them and detail our long-term strategy for getting the most out of Sorare. 

In the meantime it’s fingers crossed for a good gameweek and we will be back soon.  

You can sign up to Sorare here and get a free Rare Card once you have bought you first five Rare cards at auction.

 

 

 

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